overall impression: very impressed, one of the best restaurant week lunches I have had in the past few years
that said, I haven't had that many fantastic restaurant week experiences (previous experiences include Nobu, Montrachet, Capsuoto Freres, Tabla among others) mainly due to the fact that most of the restaurants offer sub-par menus and you end up feeling as if you are paying the $20 just for the privilege of saying that you've eaten at the particular establishment rather than the privilege of saying that you've eaten a fabulous meal at the particular restaurant. Added to this fact is that usually the service is again sub-par...understandable since the waitstaff would be making less in tips, but still, doesn't help the overall impression a customer leaves with.
back to craftbar...
their menu offered a good selection of plates in each of the categories which kind of guarantees that you will find something to suit your mood/tastes that day. There were 5-6 selections for each of the appetizer and entree courses and 4 dessert selections + 1 cheese plate selection. The grilled octopus appetizer was wonderful with a nice charred outside and tender (not rubbery) inside and the portion was quite generous. A chicken liver/fois gras pate was decent, a little too much (ie. heavy, rich) for just one person. For the entrees, the sea urchin tagliatelle was wonderful, the pasta had this great texture was cooked perfectly and the uni lent a salty creaminess to the whole dish. The grilled (or broiled?) organic chicken (half a bird) was also excellent, moist tender meat with incredibly crispy skin and topped with an assortment of greens that tasted like they were just bought from the greenmarket. The desserts were also wonderful, we were both quite full by then - but we couldn't resist so I ordered the brioche bread pudding with strawberries and ice cream (strawberries tasted of summer...yummy) and my date had the chocolate semi freddo which I didn't try but apparently he loved.
the waitress was helpful, accomodating and didn't push us to order any alcoholic beverages (although we did end up having a glass of wine each because the food was just very very good). The rest of the waitstaff genuinely seemed please to be serving us and we even got a little 'gift' of cookies to take away with us at the end of the meal - to 'show their appreciation'.
All in all a fantastic and fulfilling meal at a bargain price - would definitely make it a point to return here